Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Merry Christmas

Well, this week's post will be a bit shorter than usual because:
a) we should already be on the road headed to Louisiana
b) I am battling back from a terrible bout of something awful (no I did not eat at Taco Bell, but it couldn't have been worse)

This Christmas we celebrate two children. We celebrate our son. It is our first Christmas as parents. We also celebrate the One to whom he pointed. We celebrate the birth of a child who came to die in order to take away the sins of the world.

This year Ginny & I read about the birth of Jesus differently. Here was God's only son, whom He sent to this world to die in order that we could know Him. What a God.

We hope all of you have a great Christmas. Thanks again for all the encouragement.

Matt & Ginny Mooney

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
"Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, "Let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about."

So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

Luke 2

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Limping Along

We made a quick trip to Ginny’s hometown last weekend for a jewelry show. Lake Providence has been great to us throughout this experience, and it was great to get see a lot of folks.

We will be traveling again to Lake Providence for Christmas and then to Orlando for New Year’s with some of our friends. Ginny and her family managed to get us tickets to the Capitol One Bowl; anyone who knows me, knows of my love-hate relationship with my beloved Hoggies- they better win if I’m trekking all the way to Orlando, or it will be more hate than love. But I digress.

We also visited with a genetic nurse and counselor this week in order to educate ourselves. This appointment had been recommended for us. It was a good reminder that with Trisomy and genetic issues, there are not a whole lot of answers, but it was good to get the answers that were available.

For the first time that I am aware of, I did that which I had asked for the previous week. I tell you just so you know, but also in the event that you prayed for such. The memory of Eliot brought first a smile. May more of the same come.

Genesis 32 recounts an unusual story. A heavenly WrestleMania, if you will:

This left Jacob all alone in the camp, and a man came and wrestled with him until the dawn began to break. When the man saw that he would not win the match, he touched Jacob’s hip and wrenched it out of its socket. Then the man said, “Let me go, for the dawn is breaking!”

But Jacob said, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” … Then he blessed Jacob there.

Jacob named the place Peniel (which means “face of God”), for he said, “I have seen God face to face, yet my life has been spared.” The sun was rising as Jacob left Peniel, and he was limping because of the injury to his hip.

This story, strangely, was the first scripture that came to my mind upon finding out about Eliot’s diagnosis. I would love to insert some great epic reason for why that was the case, but the truth is- I had no idea why.

I assume from the story that this “man” is some sort of heavenly being. Particularly what sort of being is not important to me just now.

Here’s what I do see. Jacob got his blessing. He wanted it, asked for it, fought for it, and received it. But that is not all that he got.

Jacob left this encounter with a limp. Not a sermon often preached. However, Jacob’s story of blessing could not be told without the follow-up that he was never able to walk right again. That’s the funny thing about God, the blessing doesn’t always come as we expected and although we receive the blessing, we're left to limp along.

Eliot was a blessing. We’ll never be all right without him. But he was well worth the limp.

Matt & Ginny Mooney

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Contempt for the Commonplace

Apologies to anyone who noticed the failure to meet the self-imposed Wednesday deadline.

This last week brought winter with it. Ginny and I had the privilege of working with some friends of ours on a short film of Eliot's life. We are excited about this opportunity to share Eliot's story. We do, after all, feel that this is now our role- tell the story. His sweet life spoke so loudly, we can only hope to continue to let it do so. We will let you know more information as it comes.

This next sentence seems to find its way into every post now...we continue to seek exactly what we could do to help others. Please pray that if anything were to be done, it would be revealed.

Our pray as of late has been that the memory of Eliot would incite a smile on our face and in our hearts. This is a big request. Although, the smiles always come, they do not yet surface initially. Just the pain of missing him.

Recently, I have noticed that I have no patience for the mundane. This I readily attribute to my little guy. Ginny, I believe, would echo this sentiment. I would guess this is something that anyone going through life-altering experiences could relate to. It's become difficult to tolerate the trivial. I fear that my face may often give me away in conversations with others. Although, I am nodding my head and feigning interest as they tell me of their new job promotion, or holiday plans, or whatever- I am afraid my face is letting out my inner thoughts...Yeah, well my son died. I miss him. And I don't care.

The funny thing is, I do actually care more than ever. I care about the person telling me the story. I care to know him or her- their hurts, successes, what makes them tick. But I cannot tolerate small talk. I think the initial reaction to this revelation from others might be, "ah, it will pass. give it some time." Well, I hope not. As long as I can control my faces in public, I think this newfound focus might be a strength.

I am created to need a little more substance in my interaction with others than how the Hogs fared in the game last week. Don't get me wrong, I also need the small talk; and I am not promoting the loathed one whose every word is probing and serious. In Jesus, I see the perfect mixture. He interacted, went fishing, and frequented some parties. But He always saw through it, and managed to get to the heart. My hope is to get there. I am not. But, through Eliot, I am closer.

Now, I know some of you will fear talking to us next time you see us...don't. Just don't watch my face too closely.

Matt & Ginny Mooney

We have sold somewhere over 100 necklaces. Thanks to all of you who have let us know what it has meant to you. We're excited to use the money toward something worthwhile. eliot necklace.